The first space tourist to go on a voyage soon

The first space tourist, American businessman Dennis Tito, will be put in space on April 30 of this year. In the Russian spaceship Soyuz TM, together with cosmonauts Talgat Musabaev and Yuri Baturin he will make up the crew of a two-week flight to the International Space Station, said the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center at the Star City on Tuesday. The contract for this flight was signed on Tuesday by Yuri Koptev, chief of the Russian aerospace agency Rosaviakosmos. "The earlier contract on flight of the first space tourist to the Russian orbital station Mir has been revoked because the station will be dumped in March. The tourist will instead go to the ISS", the center said. During the upcoming expedition aboard the ISS, named "guest expedition", Musabaev, Baturin and Tito will leave their new Soyuz TM ship (it will be docked with the ISS as a reserve craft for crewmen of the first Russian-American mission in the event of their urgent evacuation) and fly back in the old Soyuz TM. It had brought the first Russian-US crew to the ISS on November 2, 2000 and has actually exhausted its half-year lifetime. Now it has to be replaced by the new ship, RIA Novosti reports. At the present moment, Dennis Tito is in the hospital of the Russian Defense Ministry with a flu, which he contracted during a flight-preparation period in Russia. Now the 60-year-old space tourist is in a satisfactory state and there is no reason to cancel the space flight.

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